These gutsy men and women are sharing their visions of leadership for our great nation. Over the next several weeks, the candidates will run a gauntlet of campaign challenges. Those who succeed will continue as part of Project White House; those who fail will be eliminated from the competition. The ultimate prize (besides the Arizona presidential primary): The coveted Tucson Weekly endorsement.
With this issue, we're introducing you to the candidates who have agreed to participate in Project White House. On our Web site we'll have more details about the candidates. On the Project White House Blog, you can interact directly with the candidates.
Each week, the print edition of the Weekly will feature an update on Project White House, with the endorsements revealed in our Jan. 31 edition.
Sandy WhitehouseWhitehouse in the White House in '08
Sandy Whitehouse of Vail won the lottery in the random drawing to determine the order of names on the ballot. Her name is the first one that Democratic voters will see, giving her a big advantage over the other Project White House contestants.
Whitehouse tells us her last name is her best qualification. Her platform: "Using the same method the current administration does for budget calculations, I estimate that by consolidating the president's name with the president's address for the next eight years, we can save enough money on letterheads, invitations and greeting cards to fully fund quality education for all the children in our country; provide excellent health care for our citizens young and old; devise a guest-worker program that will ensure both secure borders and an adequate workforce for our farms and factories; put our scientists to work with fully funded grants and loans to devise methods to stop global warming; and give our firefighters the resources they need to save our forests from wildfires, instead of using taxpayer money to building logging roads. ... The only other minor budget adjustment necessary will be to discontinue the current spending spree for atomic weapons, hydrogen weapons, depleted uranium weaponry, germ warfare, chemical warfare, star wars, war profiteers, big sticks, etc., etc., etc.
Chuck SeeSee a Better Future, Vote Chuck See
Chuck See, an engineer who works at the University of Arizona, says he launched his campaign "in an attempt to broaden the dialogue surrounding the issues. I believe that many important issues remain unspoken. The dominant parties have too much control over the political system, and we the people need to take our country back from them. I believe that it starts by people with independent ideas throwing their hat into the ring, but we will never have much success without election reform, so that is one of the critical issues on my plate."
See adds: "We have the power to fix our world. Right now, we can put everyone to work doing meaningful tasks at a reasonable wage. We can grow enough food to feed everyone. We have the capital to build efficient machines and factories and adopt renewable resources. We can repair our laws. We can elevate our educational system. We can build a better world. But the time is short; the window is narrow. If this generation does not act, tomorrow will always be worst than today."
Libby HubbardFree the Slaves
Libby Hubbard, who hosts the Lovolution Village show on Access Tucson under the name Doctress Neutopia, holds a doctorate in future studies with a focus on utopian thought and art from the University of Massachusetts School of Education.
Her agenda: "The Neutopian presidency is riding the wave of regime change by facing up to the radical changes humanity must make if we are to survive. The Gaia regime works as a co-creative team of the best and most virtuous individuals who have an important contribution to make to the world-saving mission of building ecological cities or arcologies."
The Doctress adds: "The purpose of the Neutopian presidential team is to morph us into Buckminster Fuller's vision of a World Management Committee who over see the formation of a resource-based 'Earth Bank.' The Earth Bank will be a worldwide, public, holographic database where all knowledge about our natural resources converges, so that we have equitably reorganized and fairly distribute our common wealth. The Neutopian presidential team uplifts humanity to a new stage in Lovolution (the globalization of love) by developing and implementing a plan to build a world where human rights and global justice are the keystones for constructing solar-powered arcologies."
Peter BollanderLet's Do It! I'm Old School With a New Age Mind
Peter Bollander boasts that he has more than 100 hours of on-camera television experience and an excellent speaking voice that can deliver heavy Jewish and Italian accents. He's worked summer stock in Hawaii and has karate training. And he's managed up to five people at any given time.
His obvious qualifications for the White House aside, Bollander has some big ideas. Here's one: The "Uncle Sam Sweepstakes." Bollander proposes that lottery tickets be sold across the globe, with 10 percent of the proceeds going to the winners and 90 percent being locked in a trust fund. In just a few decades, we'd have a couple of trillion dollars to solve the nation's financial problems--all financed by Third World residents who dream of a better life and are really bad at math.
Charles SkelleyThe New Square Deal
Charles Skelley of Tucson says he offers "real solutions (that can get real results) by confronting problems which are really serious." His "new square deal" has a dozen basic points to reduce the federal debt, clean up campaign fundraising, save Social Security, provide affordable health care, reverse the trade deficit, simplify income taxes and solve the energy crisis.
"I aim to simplify and clean up several serious problems in regard to the way the U.S. government functions," says Skelley. "This can actually be done."
David RubenDr. David Ruben of Tucson says voters want "1) to be safe from internal and external dangers, 2) good health and longevity, and 3) opportunity and prosperity." Much of that depends on a strong economy, which is "dependent on access to necessary resources and markets abroad. This means continuing, for the present, to be a colonial power and an international police force with our own best interest at heart."
Frank McEnultyAnything Is Possible in America
Frank McEnulty of Los Alamitos, Calif., has declared himself "completely and utterly disgusted with both political parties in the country."
He wonders: "What's wrong with just working together to do what is right for the country regardless of what party you are affiliated with?"
He offers himself as a solution: "If you're as disillusioned with how the political process seems to be working as I am, let's get together and make them see how upset we are. None of us can do it by ourselves, but if enough of us band together, we can and will make them sit up and take notice."
William Martin CampbellThe Green Democrat
William "Bill" Campbell of Tucson is determined to reduce the nation's carbon footprint to prevent the planet from experiencing a catastrophic environmental event later this century. As president, he'd tax global corporations based on the number of miles that goods have to travel to reach the United States, which would reduce the use of fossil fuels and bring manufacturing jobs back to America. He'd also provide federal support for the development of hydrogen- and electric-powered vehicles so the United States could reduce its dependence on fossil fuels.
Philip Vaughn TannerIt's About Change
A late addition to the Project White House team, Philip Vaughn Tanner of Tucson wants affordable health care for all Americans; a reduction of carbon dioxide emissions; withdrawal of troops from Iraq "within a safe time period"; and a new focus on solving global warming, curing disease, feeding the poor and taking care of our elderly. He supports work visas to better track seasonal and temporary workers. He believes that any two people have a right to choose who they marry and supports hate-crimes legislation to protect all people regardless of race, gender, gender identity, religion or sexual orientation.
Michael OatmanTake the Power Back!
Michael Oatman is a local software engineer and host of the public-access TV program Illegal Knowledge, which explores "everything we should have known but haven't been able to find out." Oatman says he's been planning to run for the presidency in 2008 ever since he was in grade school during the Reagan years, when he first did the math and realized he'd be old enough to legally seek the office this year.
He nearly gave up his dream when he was unable to find 250 people who would each find 1,000 people willing to give his campaign $1,000 each. But when Project White House came along, "I said immediately, 'OK, I said I was running, so now I'm definitely doing it if they're just going to throw it in my face.' And with that, here it is."
Oatman has an extensive platform that includes health care for everyone, rebuilding the middle class and stopping the transition from a republic to an empire. He says that last bit wasn't inspired by the Star Wars saga, although he applauds George Lucas' work.
Edward Brown DobsonEdward Brown Dobson has shared a long list of qualifications with us here at Project White House. He grew up on a farm in Central California. He has a bachelor's degree in anthropology, a master's in art history and an MFA in sculpture. He's drawn paychecks in nine states and four countries. He served as an Air Force helicopter pilot in the Cold War. He's raised three daughters. He's taught at the college level for 24 years. He's farmed walnuts in Central California since 1980. He's been president of the academic senate and a Kiwanis Club. He's designed and built an 18-hole golf course. He's crossed the Sahara four times. He's finished five "very good" novels. He's married to the beautiful Barbara Rhimer.
Dobson laid out many more plans in the dozen or so pages he sent to us, but we'll let him expand on those ideas on the Project White House blog.
Sean MurphyStanding Firm for America!
Sean Murphy of Tucson considers himself an old-school Republican. Like John McCain once did, he believes agents of intolerance like Pat Robertson have no place in the nation's dialogue. Like Rudy Giuliani once did, he believes that hard-working immigrants, whether they've crossed the border legally or not, are the sort of people we want in this country. Like Mitt Romney once did, he believes that a woman should decide whether to have a child, rather than leaving the decision in the hands of government. Like Ron Paul, he believes that America has meddled too much around the globe. He so believes in these principles, in fact, that he's seriously considering changing his party affiliation from Democrat to Republican so he can vote for himself on Feb. 5.
Col. Karl E. KruegerNo Bodies President but Yours!
Col. Karl E. Krueger of South Dakota says he got into the presidential race "because I see the dependence on oil as the cause of the war, bad economy and global warming, or at least pollution. When I said I would make this country energy independent, everyone laughed and said it couldn't be done. Now, Bill Richardson says he will do it, and everyone believes it can be done. I am the only one who gives a real plan for doing it."
Krueger worries that "the office of president is up for the highest bidder. The large media with the cooperation of the political parties have created a large joke." That dynamic works against him, because, as he explains, "You may have noticed that I am not a good-looking man. In the electronic age of visional media, we are voting more and more for the best-looking. Abraham Lincoln wouldn't stand a chance today."
Leland MontellAmerica Back on Course
Leland Montell of Tucson says he's running for president because "the current media-anointed leading candidates do not represent the views that I perceive as most pressing to the U.S. public. This fact is clearly due in large part to the vast sums of money required to compete in the electoral process and the subsequent constraints imposed by their corporate backers. Since I have no such constraints, I am well positioned to make the substantive changes that will set this country aright."
John McGrathA Return to a Government of the People, by the People and for the People
Tucsonan John McGrath has a question for the American people: "Have you ever noticed that every time a politician talks about our Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid programs, they want to, in effect, make cuts to these programs? Politicians never mention their own exclusive plans and do not mention making cuts to their plans, which far exceed the average citizen's plan. Just take a moment to think about all the perks our politicians are receiving."
He concludes: "If honesty is the best policy, then we should replace the present-day politicians, because they are living in a fantasy world and can not recognize the truth from a lie. ... I feel I can do a better job by being honest. After all, you can not please all of the people all the time, but honesty goes a long way."
James Creighton Mitchell Jr.. Mr. Mitchell Goes to Washington
James Creighton Mitchell Jr. of Illinois--who is listed first on the GOP ballot because he, like Whitehouse, won the secretary of state's random drawing--has a four-point platform for his campaign.
1. No elected federal official should have a retirement package greater than what the rest of us receive from Social Security based upon our salary and years of employment.
2. I believe there should be a plan to eliminate the national debt in 15 years.
3. We need all candidates and party leaders saying no to corruption, no to pay-to-play.
4. We need to support programs like Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts which develop character, confidence, self reliance and social skills for teamwork.
Rick OutzenIt Ain't Rocket Science
Rick Outzen, publisher of the Independent News of Pensacola, Fla., is so enthusiastic about his campaign that he put himself on the cover of his own newspaper. In the article, he declared: "People think Fred Thompson is lazy and talks slow. I will show the voters what lazy and slow really are. People think Ron Paul is crazy and unbalanced. Well, I invented crazy and unbalanced."
Here's one campaign pledge: Outzen will secure the borders "by annexing Mexico and Canada. We will draw our new borders on the map with extra thick markers so that people will know we mean business."
Orion Karl DaleyLet Not This Country Be Without You
If you have trouble understanding Orion Daley's slogan, he offers a translation: "Leave no American behind!" Daley, of New York, has the coolest first name of all the Project White House candidates and has been planning his presidential run since January 2005. His principles: Transparent and accountable government, the dignity of human rights, balanced trade, economic solvency and workable foreign policy.
Daley's book, The New Deal, lays out "real solutions for improving the health, safety and welfare of America."
Richard GraysonNo Slogans. Voters Have Had Enough.
Richard Grayson, who ended up on the Arizona presidential primary ballot as the result of a "staff mix-up," is actually running a congressional campaign this year against Republican Jeff Flake. But he's gamely agreed to participate in Project White House nonetheless.
Grayson is the author of several novels and, more recently, the nonfiction book Write-In: Diary of a Congressional Candidate in Florida's Fourth Congressional District, an account of his 2004 campaign that originally appeared online at McSweeney's.
Grayson has worked as a staff attorney in social policy at the Center for Governmental Responsibility at the University of Florida College of Law and served as the director of academic resources at Shepard Broad Law Center at Nova Southeastern University. He's taught at Arizona State University and other colleges and now divides his time between Brooklyn, N.Y., Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and Apache Junction, Ariz.
His platform: Medicare for all; immediate withdrawal from Iraq; and a dollar-a-gallon tax on gasoline to help achieve energy independence.
Tish HaymerLove Bomb' Em Into the Stone Age!
Tish Haymer has a bit of a home-field advantage with Project White House, seeing as she's worked for the Tucson Weekly for years. However, she'll have to compete just as hard as everyone else to win the coveted Weekly endorsement! Haymer has worked in almost every department within Territorial Newspapers (the Weekly's parent operation), and recently served as the Weekly's listings goddess for about a year.
Bob ForthanWrite Me Send to a Friend
Grammar issues aside, we're not even sure what Forthan's slogan means, though it seems to be a cross between a chain letter and a plea for a pen pal. Nonetheless, the Oregon resident is a candidate for the presidency, although he complains that "I can't get my word out; I'm undereducated, but I read well. I'm poor only because it's a state of mine, meaning I'm rich depending on who I'm talking to, but I have high hopes, the 2008, presidential political forums have shut out the lesser known candidates, but I would like to prove a point, you don't have to be rich, or be well educated to be president of the United States of America, and one person can change the world with a few good thoughts."
Forthan has a five-point plan: Make America a cash-only transaction country; build environmentally efficient Dome Homes; stop the invention of insurance; establish the "no gun" control; and effect a minimum standard of living for all people.
Rhett SmithTo Win the War(s) ... End the Hate(s) ... Educate!\
Rhett Smith of Texas brings an all-caps volume to his campaign. His campaign platform explains: AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE 2008 PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN MUST INCLUDE A THEOLOGICAL EDUCATION/TRANSFORMATION ...
IF YOU WATCHED THE YOUTUBE/CNN REPUBLICAN DEBATE ON WED. NIGHT NOV. 28, A YOUNG MAN HELD UP (TO THE CAMERA) WHAT APPEARED TO BE A KING JAMES EDITION OF THE HOLY BIBLE ... IT IS VERY SAD THAT THE YOUNG MAN APPEARED TO BE INTOXICATED ... AND IT WAS AN INDICTMENT OF OUR ENTIRE POLITICAL/EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM THAT HIS QUESTION TO THE REPUBLICAN CANDIDATES IMPLIED THAT THE (CANDIDATES' ) PLATFORM FOR THE ENTIRE REPUBLICAN PARTY WAS CONNECTED TO THIS TRANSLATED RELIGIOUS TEXT ... HE ASKED IF THE CANDIDATES BELIEVED "EVERY WORD" ... CANDIDATES ROMNEY AND HUCKABEE RESPONDED AFFIRMITIVELY, WHILE NOT ONE OTHER CANDIDATE EVEN PAID "LIP SERVICE" TO THE GREATEST POLITICAL TREATISE EVER "PENNED" BY OUR REVOLUTIONARY FOUNDERS ... "CONGRESS SHALL MAKE NO LAW RESPECTING AN ESTABLISHMENT OF RELIGION"
AMERICANS MUST LEARN THAT ARTICLE VI OF THE U.S. CONSTITUTION SAYS "THAT NO RELIGIOUS TEST WILL BE USED FOR AN OFFICER OF THE UNITED STATES" ...
THE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES OFFERED THE QUESTIONER NO HELP BY PANDERING TO HIS MINDSET AND CNN SHOULD AT LEAST OFFER THE YOUNG MAN A COPY OF THE CONSTITUTION AND BILL OF RIGHTS.
TO STOP THE WAR, END THE HATE END THE LIES TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY AMERICA CAN NO LONGER BE A "SAFE-HAVEN" FOR "COWBOY IMPERIALISM" OR "COWBOY THEOLOGY" SUCH AS "CHRISTIAN-ZIONISM."
The BallotProject White House candidates in bold
- Sandy Whitehouse
- Bill Richardson
- Frank Lynch
- Karl Krueger
- Barack Obama
- John Edwards
- Peter "Simon" Bollander
- Leland Montell
- Chuck See
- Libby Hubbard
- Loti Gest
- Orion Daley
- William Campbell
- Philip Tanner
- Dennis J. Kucinich
- Hillary Clinton
- Edward Dobson
- Tish Haymer
- Rich Lee
- Michael Oatman
- Mike Gravel
- Evelyn L. Vitullo
- Christopher J. Dodd
- Richard Grayson
- James Creighton Mitchell Jr.
- Frank McEnulty
- Mitt Romney
- Fred Thompson
- Hugh Cort
- Michael P. Shaw
- Charles Skelley
- Ron Paul
- John Michael Fitzpatrick
- Bob Forthan
- Mike Huckabee
- John R. McGrath
- Rick Outzen
- Michael Burzynski
- Sean "CF" Murphy
- John McCain
- Duncan Hunter
- David Ruben
- Rhett R. Smith
- Alan Keyes
- Jerry Curry
- Daniel Gilbert
- Jack Shepard
- Rudy Giuliani